Have you watched Idols West Africa of late? If not then you are definitely missing something.
Although dominantly sponsored by Celtel Nigeria, the joy has been in watching those young talents come on stage, then the bulk is passed to the audience or fans as the case may be for them to vote for their choice of artistes through the Information Communication Technology (ICT) tools, either by the Internet at the Idols’ website or the Global System for Mobile communications (GSM) through the Short Messaging Service (SMS).
Though the event’s last voting was scheduled for Monday, May 21, the musical talent hunt was basically introduced in search of the first West African Idols via solo singing; a fellow who is anticipated to command lots of sensation and be able to represent West Africa both at home and abroad.
With the hunt rounding off, Nigerians among other enthusiasts in the sub-region are also using what they have to get what they want by either using their Short Messaging Service or electronic mails (e-mails) to solicit votes for their favourite artistes on weekly basis.
Check this e-mail out: “Hi friends, if you have been watching Idols West Africa, you will agree that (names withheld) has all it takes to become the West Africa Idols 2007. Don’t you agree that his passion to deliver his various details is legendary. He also has the best voice in the competition and he comes from a very poor background.
“Ladies and gentlemen, this is an opportunity to bring smiles and hope to a humble boy, his family, his people, his friends, our nation and West Africa.
“All you have to do is to text the number … to 33351 from any GSM provider. Do this as many times as possible or even once. Note that you must do this before 12 noon on Monday, so that your vote can count.”
However, voting lines are opened after the Sunday night show and will remain open for a publicized amount of time, because every Monday night results are shown, and votes announced while contestants with the least number of votes exit the competition until the last two.
According to the Public and Communications Managers at MultiChoice Nigeria, Mr. Segun Fayose, voting lines are opened for just less than a week for the public to vote and decide who is crowned the first West African Idols.
He also highlighted that the public are asked to vote for their favourite singers and for those in Nigeria, they could send their choice to – 33351 across all networks, Ghana Areeba Network –1444, Kasapa, Tigo and One Touch Networks - 15626 Sierra Leone, Liberia, Togo, Zambia, Botswana, Namibia, Zimbabwe, Swaziland and Malawi -15626. Senegal: Orange - 50050 Tigo - 67167 Mali: Orange - 7574 Cameroon - 8704 South Africa – 34626.
He noted that GSM Value Added Service (VAS) rate for SMS applies per message sent, advising that fans could alternatively vote online.
Mr. Fayose equally informed that in order to shun syndicated voting, there is a cap of 50 SMS votes per line per week, whereas, each person would be able to vote once per day on the website.Idols West Africa is being produced for M-Net by Pan African and International Entertainment company, Fremantle Media, the originators of the Idols concept.